Hope you can visit Arizona, the sunshine state that welcomes over 100 million annual overnight visitors. Our first family stay started in the centrally located state capital, Phoenix proper. We didn't summit their Camelback Mountain with a baby boy on each of our respective backs, but wiped our sweaty brows as we wondered at the views.
We planned more excursions our first visit. We explored the Desert Botanical Gardens, located near their zoo. We enjoyed their butterfly tent and special Chihuly Glass exhibit that enhanced the natural setting with similar colors, shapes, and sizes. We drove 30 minutes to the throwback Rawhide Wild West Town with cowboys, horses for kids to ride and a playground.
As our boys get older, we return to favorite spots, especially near Tuscon, toward Southern Arizona at Dove Mountain and the Sonora dessert. Our boys squeal at the reptiles we pass. They hold snakes in the ranger station. My allergies enjoy a break from the pollen at home. We admire the tall cacti or saguaro that tower over us.
We cool off in the pool during every season. We brave the heat in June when hotel rates dip. The boys and I wear rash guards that protect our arms from the sun and lather on the sun screen.
We embrace more outdoor resort activities in the morning and when the sun sets to bookend pool time. When we returned to the cold from our last visit, our oldest praised his fun Dad who stayed with the boys in the pool. He observed I spent some time in the hot tub and read a lot in the shade.
Cue the Mom guilt. Writing this post helped me get over it. Kids do better when their Moms take care of themselves, which may include quiet time and time away!
Although we sometimes clean up for dinner, photos omit my colorful sun hat that also protects against the sun. We schedule less out West, but also find time for reading. Local art and murals depict the rich Native American history and Latin influence on Arizona.
Warm wishes as I type this with chills in Chicago with our space heater running this cold day! In the future, we look forward to more adventures, such as baseball spring training, the Grand Canyon, and Red Rock State Park. Hope you find your own sunshine in the meantime and enjoy some time in Arizona! Any family Arizona favorites for you?
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